I started learning how to program just a few years ago. While learning how to code, I kept little mind other than to use whatever methods suited my style best. I wasn’t overly concerned with anyone else being able to decipher the projects that I was working on, other than maybe the professor of the class if I had to turn it in for a grade.
That type of ideology quickly fades though when you are thrown into the development of a project with a team. You quickly learn that you could do all of the parts of the project yourself, but the amount of time it would require to do everything yourself would take entirely too long, probably wouldn’t be as good of a final product in the end, and just wouldn’t be worth it in the end. By working in a team, you learn that you can complete programming projects much faster and usually the quality of your work will be far superior to doing it alone.
In the spring of 2014 I was part of a team of three members developing a game for a data structures and algorithms class. Not only did I learn more about the structure of code by working with several other people, but I also learned about the importance of structuring a team to reach your end goal. There were conflicting opinions about the design of the game. Other issues arose about how to track changes to code and making sure that one person did not overwrite what someone else had already spent hours doing. And let me tell you, nothing is more frustrating than spending your entire Friday night working on a project only to have someone else erase everything you did because you didn’t have a system in place to let everyone on the team know who completed which part of the coding already. In the end, we all managed to agree on a workflow and a way to communicate that worked well for everyone on the team. We set goals for everyone to meet and we managed to finish the assignment and create a very cool game.
Now that I started my internship at 7 Generation Games a few weeks ago, I am finding myself in similar situation of having to step outside my comfort zone and learn new skills and methods of communication in order to be an effective member of the team.
While each of us has a different viewpoint on opinions on game design and content, one thing is certain: we all want to create an amazing educational video game. I think that I speak for all of us on the 7 Generation Games team when I say that the work we are doing is more than just a job. We are creating a product that can revolutionize learning in the classroom. By cumulating of our efforts we manage to help kids not only learn math, but love to learn math. And nothing is more exciting than knowing that your hard work will make a difference.
I’m excited to be a part of the 7 Generation Games team, and to have the opportunity to help work on development for both Spirit Lake: The Game and Fish Lake. And now for my shameless plug: If you haven’t downloaded the demo of our game, you should! After all it’s free, and I think it’s safe to say you’re going to like the games that we are creating.
To download Spirit Lake: The Game, click here.
Until next time!